Where Can I Watch/Stream The Super Bowl
The next Super Bowl – Super Bowl LV – will be played in Tampa, Florida, and is scheduled for February of 2021. An interesting twist occurred in the TV rights arrangement for this Super Bowl. NBC broadcast Super Bowl LII in 2018. CBS had Super Bowl LIII in 2019. FOX just carried Super Bowl LIV in 2020. Therefore, NBC was in line to broadcast this next Super Bowl in 2021.
However, because NBC has the Winter Olympic Games in February of 2022, NBC decided to trade this game to CBS. NBC will televise Super Bowl LVI in February of 2022 so that it can heavily promote the Winter Olympics and deliver more value to its advertisers. CBS will get the Super Bowl in 2021, so that is where you can watch the Super Bowl on American television. You can stream at cbssports.com.
How Do Teams Qualify For The Super Bowl?
The 32-team NFL has a 12-team playoff setup. Six teams in each conference, AFC and NFC, compete for the conference championship and a spot in the Super Bowl. The top two teams in each conference get a first-round bye and host second-round playoff games. The four wild card teams play in the first round. The winners travel to the sites of the second-round playoff teams who earned first-round byes.
The second-round games, also referred to as divisional round games, create the two teams which will play in the conference championship games. The higher-seeded team hosts that game. The winners go to the Super Bowl, which is played at a pre-determined neutral site.
Under the new collective bargaining agreement, the NFL will soon move to a new format with 14 playoff teams, seven in each conference. Under that new format, there will be only one team with a first-round bye, not two. There will be six wild-card games instead of four on the first weekend of the playoffs.
This will place more of a premium on being the one team in each conference which gets that single bye, all while six other playoff teams play on the first weekend in the wild card round. This past season, the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers would have gained the first-round bye.
Super Bowl History
The Super Bowl began in humble circumstances in January of 1967. It was called the “AFL-NFL World Championship Game” of professional football, and its initial edition in Los Angeles was played before a crowd at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum which was only two-thirds of capacity; there were at least 25,000 empty seats for the game between the AFL champion Kansas City Chiefs and the NFL champion Green Bay Packers.
The fact that the Packers, coached by Vince Lombardi, won that game led the NFL to create the Vince Lombardi Trophy. Lombardi and the Packers won the second AFL-NFL World Championship Game in 1968, and then, in 1969, the seeds of a tradition had been planted. The “Super Bowl” name was part of NBC television’s broadcast for the 1969 game between the New York Jets and the Baltimore Colts.
When the Jets, 18-point underdogs, scored one of the most massive upsets in sports history, the Super Bowl really began to take off. It steadily grew in stature and television exposure through the 1970s. In 1977, the movie “Black Sunday” involved a plot which included a recreation of Super Bowl X the year before in 1976.
The Super Bowl became a part of popular culture which in many ways exceeded the game itself. TV networks tried to launch new shows right after the Super Bowl. Commercials aired during the Super Bowl became national conversation pieces.